Does My Website Need an SSL Certificate?

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So, you’ve spent a lot of time setting up the domain and hosting for your site and picking out a great design.

You have the products chosen that you are going to promote and crafted some fantastic blog posts. Well done – but is your site secure?

Online security is a big thing. Well, it has always been a big thing but in today’s widely connected world it is more important than ever before. This is why SSL is so vital.

Many people overlook this fact and don’t ensure that their website is secure and the information that is sent is encrypted. If you haven’t even heard of SSL before or if you have and aren’t sure why it is important, then we are going to show you:

● What SSL actually is and how it works
● Why you need it on your site
● How to get an SSL certificate
● Does SSL impact SEO?

Ready? Let’s answer some common questions.

secure your website with ssl certificate

What is an SSL certificate?

If you have never heard of the term SSL before then we’re here to tell you all about it.

SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer. In basic terms it offers a secure method for a website to interact with its visitors whether they are simply browsing the site or entering their personal information.

It offers a safe and secure way for someone to access your website. Think of it as a sort of middle person between a visitor and your website. It creates an encrypted connection. It means that when someone enters their details into your website then everything is secured and can’t be intercepted.

All of this work happens behind the scenes as it were. You don’t really know that it is working however it is there in the background maintaining the security of your site.

A common misconception is that only people selling things or asking people to enter their details need and SSL certificate.

Do I need an SSL certificate?

Yes.

It really is as simple as that.

Something that a lot of website owners say is that they don’t need an SSL certificate because their website is so small and they don’t get a lot of traffic. Even if you don’t sell anything directly from your site – as in people aren’t entering their personal or credit cards details – you still need it to be secure.

When Chrome was updated a few years ago it made a point of clearly showing which websites are secure and which ones aren’t. This can really put people off your website because a message will show up in Chrome before you even get to the website stating that it isn’t secure and that you should turn back. Other web browsers similarly show which websites are secure and which aren’t.

So, an SSL certificate is important not just for security itself but to reassure visitors that your site is safe to use.

How do I get an SSL certificate?

Now that you know what SSL is and how it works, you’re probably wondering ‘how to get https certificate’?

There are various methods you can use to get an SSL certificate for your website. Some of these options are free and others cost a small amount of money. Free services such as Let’s Encrypt are absolutely fine however they do require you to reupload a certificate more frequently than the paid options.

If you are looking for SSL for WordPress you can do a simple Google search that will bring up several options and plugins to help.

Google and SSL – does it impact SEO?

Aside from offering a secure connection to your site and also boosting trust with your visitors, an SSL certificate has a boost in your SEO.

An https:// (one with an SSL certificate) website will get a ranking boost over an http:// (one that doesn’t have an SSL certificate). The Google crawlers are looking for secure sites and webpages first and ranking them before ones that aren’t.

This means that people who search on Google are far more likely to get a secure website than one that may be susceptible to malware and other attacks.

Your website and security

Having a secure website is now the default position that every website owner should adopt.

Hacking, malware and other nefarious acts are becoming much more sophisticated and the loss of data or personal information can have devastating impacts. This isn’t the only reason that you should have an SSL certificate. Even though ensuring that your website visitors are safe and that their details are secure is important, it also has other benefits.

This includes a boost on your SEO as well as increasing trust in your website, business and the services and products that it offers.

Getting an SSL certificate is fairly easy so make sure that your site is secure for everyone that lands on it.

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